Feds indict 9 South King County residents on drug trafficking charges

Those accused from Federal Way, Kent, Renton, Enumclaw

Thirteen people were indicted, mainly from South King County cities, for investigation of drug trafficking by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Hector Duran Aldaco, 23, of Federal Way, was named as the lead defendant, according to a May 14 U.S. Department of Justice news release.

“These defendants were brazenly bringing large loads of drugs to Western Washington and didn’t hesitate to arm themselves with high-powered firearms,” said U.S. Attorney Tessa M. Gorman. “Even after law enforcement seized the drugs in various traffic stops in Oregon and Washington, they were not deterred.”

Those indicted of the conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, including fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine and alprazolam were:

• Damian Pina-Raymundo, 19, of Enumclaw

• Daniel Moreno, 24, of Federal Way

• Rogelio Pena, 21, of Tacoma

• David Padilla, 22, of Kent

• Neldin Licona Rivera, 33, of Seattle

• Sebastian Esquivel Rojas, 20, of Federal Way

A second indictment charges Salina Rose Atsemet, 26, of Renton, for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute it for a seizure on Feb. 27, 2024, where one kilo of cocaine and two firearms were taken by law enforcement.

In a third indictment, Brian Axel Pedraza Cisneros, 20, and Jose Rodolfo Aguilar Cortes, 21, both of Federal Way, are indicted for a conspiracy to distribute controlled substances for a seizure of 14 kilos of cocaine and one firearm on March 24, 2024, in Lewis County.

The indictments call for forfeiture of items linked to the criminal conduct including firearms that were seized in the case.

In the investigation prior to the arrests on Tuesday, May 14, law enforcement seized: 59 kilograms of fentanyl pills, 81 kilograms of methamphetamine, 21 kilos of cocaine and 11 firearms.

Two additional defendants, Brian Garcia Lopez, 23, of Kent; and Otis Lee Dew, 25, of Puyallup, allegedly were involved in the drug trafficking activity.

On May 14 alone, law enforcement seized an additional 12-plus kilograms of methamphetamine, more than 14,000 fentanyl pills, a half-kilogram of cocaine and 42 firearms, according to the news release.

“Drugs and guns are a dangerous combination and this group had large amounts of both, posing a grave threat to Western Washington, “said David. F. Reames, special agent in charge, DEA Seattle Field Division. “The Drug Enforcement Administration is thankful to our federal, state, and local partners who worked with us tirelessly on this case to safeguard the lives of our community endangered by this group.”

This case was investigated by the DEA, FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF), Seattle Police Department, Oregon State Police, Portland Police Department, California Highway Patrol, the Los Angeles Strike Force, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Centralia Police Department.

Guns confiscated during a drug bust of South King County residents. COURTESY PHOTO, U.S. Department of Justice

Guns confiscated during a drug bust of South King County residents. COURTESY PHOTO, U.S. Department of Justice